Luxury holidays in Port Vila

Brimming with palm-fringed beaches, bustling markets and traditional kastom culture, Vanuatu’s Port Vila on the island of Efate is a surf-swept capital with small-town seaside charm. There’s adventure to be found under the surface – explore the reefs on a snorkel safari, plunge into the terraced pools of the Mele Cascades, or dive the 17th-century Star of Russia shipwreck. Dry off beneath the fronds of the botanic gardens, then get stuck into the French cuisine – a memento from the country’s colonial past – washed down with a beer at a breezy beachfront bar.

When to go

Port Vila is balmy year-round; just watch out for the rain from November to March. High season runs from May to July, so be prepared for a bit more bustle if you visit then.

Getting there

  • Planes

    Bauerfield International Airport is a handy seven kilometres from the city centre; direct flights from Australasian cities including Auckland, Brisbane, Sydney and Nadi in Fiji touch down here.
  • Boats

    Speed boats (or rather motorised dinghies) are available for charter or scheduled trips, and make a zippy way to zoom to between islands when the weather is fair – just double-check any boat you board is fully kitted out with lifejackets.
  • Automobiles

    The main roads of Port Vila teem with minibuses ready to be flagged down; they can take you (slowly) across town, or further afield to Hideaway Island or the Mele Cascades.